He had the bulging muscles, the ripped abs, the tiny g-string and the darker-than-dark bronzed skin necessary to win any bodybuilding competition.
The only thing a competitor at the Arnold Schwarzenegger-backed Arnold Classic Europe fitness event in Madrid last weekend was missing was a fake tan on his head.
Instead the bodybuilder, Aleksander Mandahl of Norway, stood proudly on the competition’s stage, flexing his chiseled, nearly black body while his blindingly white head stood out on top.
The whole episode appeared as if the bodybuilder had muttered Schwarzenegger’s famous “I’ll be back” movie line in the midst of his self-tanning, only to never return.
The fake tan fail took place during the Arnold Sports Festival that the former governor of California, and a former Mr. Universe too, brought to Europe along with co-promoter Jim Loirmer and the president of the International Federation of Bodybuilding, Dr Rafael Santonja.
While the tan blunder has made headlines, a spokesperson for the festival says in the world of bodybuilding, the look is not at all strange.
“There were 600 competitors in the amateur competition and they all get some sort of spray tan and it’s really not that unusual to not spray your face,” Brent LaLonde, a spokesman for Arnold Classic Europe told ABCNews.com. “While the picture looks unique, in the world of amateur bodybuilding it’s really not unusual to see that look onstage.”
Schwarzenegger took a break from his recent book promotion tour to attend the three-day event but it was not fake tan man whom he congratulated for winning the top prize. According to LaLonde, Mandahl placed 4th in the Classic Bodybuilding Over 180cm category.
In the professional competition, it was Shawn Rhoden, a Jamaican bodybuilder, who both took first place and won a personal congratulations from the “Terminator” star.
“Congratulations to Shawn Rhoden, the 2012 Arnold Classic Europe Champion!” Schwarzenegger tweeted to the champ.